8 Ways to Style a Mantel with Art

By Kate Riley March 30, 2017

My default decoration above a mantel is typically a shapely statement mirror, and I’ve hung one in my living room for some time. Over the years I’ve also styled a mantel with art (in winter, summer, and fall), and still I love the large scale vintage art that hangs above my family room fireplace.

Below are eight simple ideas for styling a mantel with artwork just in time for your spring sprucing.

1. Overlap artwork in varied sizes and frame finishes, surround with potted plants.


park & oak

2. Pair a large piece of black and white art with candlesticks and a vase filled with flowers or ferns.




3. Display one print asymmetrically, and balance it with a grouping of candlesticks (or vases) on the other side.


simo design

4. Cluster vases and objects in varied shapes and place a piece of framed art in between.




5. Hang a large piece of art and layer a smaller piece in front. Fill in with decorative objects on both sides such as botanicals, books, and candlesticks.


emily henderson


6. Group a trio of art in three different sizes, the larger two in the back, the smaller layered in between. Surround with decorative objects in pairs or sets of three.


old brand new

7. Partner matching frames with repeating decorative objects and tall blooming or leafy branches.


the inspired room


8. Keep it simple and sophisticated with a large scale piece of art that fills the wall above the fireplace.


unskinny boppy


Etsy is a favorite source for artwork, take a peek at these shops that feature abstract artwork, also these black and white favorites. Or if it’s greenery you love for your mantel, check out these leafy botanical prints.



  1. thank you my friend! figured it was time to update the 2 year old pic. :)

  2. Such great ideas! I especially like the 2nd photo with the candlesticks. I have a similar stacked stone fireplace and can’t wait to use your idea!

  3. Perfect timing! Great ideas – we just finished remodeling and I need to start hanging pictures again. I’m having such a hard time deciding where to hang the pieces I want to keep! My mantel has been bare for months – time to get busy!

  4. I like the updated photo of yourself. So pretty!
    I have a mantel that is very close to the ceiling — there is only a foot or so of space between the two. When hanging or leaning art on the wall, the already narrow space seems to become even more narrow. Do you have any thoughts for decorating this type of mantel?

    • Hmmm retro, not sure I’d decorate that space with anything at all given that explanation unless the blank space bugs you then perhaps a sculptural branch? Would love to see a picture to get a better idea :)

  5. Great tips, decorating a mantel with art is such a sleek and stylish way to spruce up your mantel, although I always struggle with how to do it. I usually find or make printables and put them in unique frames with every season change, a inexpensive way to change out home decor.

    • Great tip about swapping the art Charlotte – a fresh look at a low cost!

  6. Thanks for these ideas! I love #6 and want to copy it!! ? I see you can shop the large blue print, but wondering about the smaller 2 multi colored ones. Any ideas or where you’ve seen something similar?

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